General Mills Inc., the No. 2 U.S. cereal maker, said third-quarter profit rose less than 1%, its smallest gain in more than a year, as consumers on low-carbohydrate diets bought fewer cake mixes and snacks.
Net income rose to $242 million, or 63 cents a share, from $240 million, or 63 cents, a year earlier, the Minneapolis company said. Sales climbed 2.2%, the smallest increase since 2001, to $2.7 billion.
Profit excluding costs related mostly to the acquisition of Pillsbury was 64 cents a share. The company had been expected to earn 66 cents, the average estimate of analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call.
Shares of General Mills fell 20 cents to $46.15 on the NYSE.